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About the APEC Vaccines Task Force

The COVID-19 crisis has made an impact on every APEC economy and across the globe, while putting populations at fundamental health risk. In such a climate, the need to establish resilient and sustainable health systems has never been more evident , both to promote healthy citizenry and to enable a thriving economy. 

Vaccination is inevitably a critical component of any such program. Not only must health systems be ready for the administering of a COVID-19 vaccine when such a vaccine arrives on the market, but they must provide robust immunization programs throughout and after the current crisis so that COVID- 19’s impact is not compounded by additional outbreaks of vaccine-preventable disease.

APEC Health Ministers agree that vaccination is one of the most important and cost-effective public health measures. By taking a life-course approach, APEC economies can better prevent infection and disease for all populations, foster a sustainable health system, improve economic and social inclusion, and enable economic growth.The APEC Health Working Group (HWG) Sub-Working Group on Vaccination (SWGv), which is co-led by the United States and Canada, advances a coordinated approach for the HWG to address issues related to vaccination in the Asia-Pacific region. Under the SWGv, the vaccination program of work (VPoW) allows the HWG to coordinate and build on existing vaccination efforts and promote a cohesive, longer-term approach to related initiatives on vaccine supply (led by U.S.) and demand (led by Canada).

The APEC Vaccines Task Force serves to address the need for regional cooperation on vaccines policy through cooperation across the public and private sector stakeholders. Established in 2020, the Task Force brings together public and private sector stakeholders and serves to coordinate and support the SWGv activities on vaccines-related issues. T he VTF now serves to support APEC and its members to implement the APEC Action Plan on Vaccination Across the Life-Course, a comprehensive strategy for enhancing the resilience and sustainability of immunization programs in APEC member economies across the 2021-2030 decade.

Implementation activities have included the launch of the APEC Regional Dashboard on Vaccination Across the Life-Course, as well as numerous policy dialogues, webinars, and workshops. Ultimately, implementing the targets of this action plan will help APEC economies operationalize and achieve the  WHO Immunization Agenda 2030 (IA2030 ).